London-based Austrian-Brazilian artist Viji announces her highly-anticipated debut album So Vanilla. Along with this she is sharing a video for the hook-heavy, fuzz laden new single “Sedative”. The new album is due out 27th October via London tastemaker label Speedy Wunderground.
Referencing the easy, sleazy sounds of the 90s, Viji – real name Vanilla Jenner – has been cementing herself as one of the most exciting alternative artists to watch in the UK right now. Having previously released music on Dirty Hit, she recently signed to Speedy Wunderground and has rapidly built a loyal fanbase whilst receiving widespread plaudits from the likes of BBC Radio 1’s Introducing, Jack Saunders & Nels Hilton, BBC Radio 6 Music’s Steve Lamacq, CLASH, Dork, DIY, Wonderland, So Young, and many more.
So Vanilla was recorded predominantly in London, in partnership with four-time Mercury Prize nominated producer and Speedy Wunderground label head, Dan Carey (Fontaines D.C., Kae Tempest, Wet Leg). Having finished So Vanilla in November 2022, Viji relays that every song had a different writing process – some saw her and Carey playing guitar chords together for hours, until the sounds fused into one, and others came from late night ramblings at home.
Combining fiercely layered guitar melodies with pop hooks and slow, soulful soliloquies, “Sedative” is a perfect introduction to So Vanilla. Speaking on the track, Viji says, “I wrote Sedative about a girl. She’s like a breath of fresh air, and there’s a fine line between friendship and attraction that was hard to navigate. Usually when I meet someone like that I wanna ‘be’ that person, but this time I wanted to be with her.”
The single is accompanied by a surreal new video directed by Gilbert Trejo. Viji says, “the scenes unlock the dreamworld inside my head, while being restrained in a padded room. Expect a bit of ‘sucker punch’ with a set of twins in homage to ‘The Shining’”.
Discussing how inspirations come to her songwriting process, Viji mentions that “Down’s” writing session originated from a frustratingly happy period in her life and “Ambien”, “I chipped away at the lyrics the whole summer. The song has so many verses, I wrote around 13 in the end.” The stripped back song Blanket came together quickly. Thinking she was just playing around, Viji then realized it was done. With an eerie cello part and three chords, this was the most serendipitous song recorded on the album.
Her approach to shoe-gazy rock, raw instrumentals and vocal delivery makes her stand out as one of the most exciting UK artists to watch, pioneering what rock music can sound like in the modern era.
To celebrate the release of the new album Viji will also play a number of instore events and live shows, and next month will play a headline show at The Shacklewell Arms in London – her first headline show since her sold-out permance at Third Man Records in March where material from the forthcoming record was played for the first time.
Dates are as follows:
10th August – The Shacklewell Arms, London
28th October – Jacaranda – Liverpool
29th October – Jumbo – Leeds
30th October – Rough Trade – London
31st October – Resident – Brighton
So Vanilla is out 27th October via Speedy Wunderground